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T20 World Cup – Crowd trouble mars Pakistan-Afghanistan clash as ‘thousands’ of ticketless fans attempt to force entry

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ICC promise ‘thorough investigation’ after disturbances outside Dubai Stadium

The ICC have asked the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) to “undertake a thorough investigation” following crowd trouble caused by “thousands of ticketless fans” at Pakistan and Afghanistan’s Super 12s game in the men’s T20 World Cup in Dubai.

The sides’ previous World Cup meeting, at Headingley in 2019, had been marred by crowd trouble, security lapses and pitch invasions and despite a pre-match plea from Rashid Khan to “remain cool and calm and just focus on enjoying the game”, huge crowds descended on Dubai International Stadium in attempts to gain entry.

In a statement issued at midnight local time, the ICC said that more than 16,000 tickets had been issued for the game but that “thousands” of fans without them travelled to the stadium “and then attempted to force entry”. At least one external barrier was pushed over, with a surge of supporters gathered outside the stadium’s main gates throughout the game itself.

“Dubai Police and security staff secured the stadium to ensure the safety of everyone inside and brought in significant additional resources to disperse the crowd and calm the situation,” the statement said. “At approximately 7pm, Dubai Police directed that all gates should remain closed and no further entry was permitted to maintain a safe and controlled environment inside the venue.

“The ICC has asked the ECB to undertake a thorough investigation into tonight’s events to learn any lessons and will work closely with authorities to ensure there is no repeat of this situation in the future.”

Fans have been permitted at 70-80 percent capacity throughout the World Cup depending on local restrictions, with tickets for matches involving Asian teams selling well. The ICC’s statement included an apology to “any fans with valid tickets who were unable to enter the stadium tonight”, who were advised to contact the ticket provider.

Mohammad Nabi, Afghanistan’s captain, said in his post-match press conference: “For the Afghan fans, please buy a ticket and come to the stadium. Don’t repeat again. This is not good.”

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98



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Recent Match Report – Bangla Tiger vs Abu Dhabi 17th Match 2021/22

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Half-century from Gayle not enough as Udana holds his nerve

It may have taken a week but finally, after five wins out of five, the winning streak of Team Abu Dhabi came to an end courtesy of the Bangla Tigers.

That was despite a thrilling knock from none other than Chris Gayle, who – with an unbeaten 52 off 23 – threatened to pull off another remarkable chase for the Abu Dhabi outfit. But he ran out of partners as the Tigers continued their winning run to move to within two points of Team Abu Dhabi.
With 18 needed off four and Gayle on strike, no one would have counted out Team Abu Dhabi. Not least after Gayle and Jamie Overton – with two sixes off the last two deliveries – plundered 18 off the final over from Dwayne Bravo on Wednesday evening to seal a stunning victory. This time however, there was no Overton to pull off some last-over heroics and instead Isuru Udana held his nerve to take the Tigers to a fourth consecutive win.

Buoyed by a capacity crowd and after losing the toss, the Tigers’ batting order took on the attack from ball one as Johnson Charles dispatched a short delivery from Ahmed Daniyal for four, but he was gone the next ball hitting one straight to Marchant de Lange at long-off.

Will Jacks, in fine form, began with two unconvincing scoops to the boundary, before remarakbly getting dropped twice by Muhammad Farooq off the bowling of de Lange in the same over. But there was nothing unconvincing about the way he dispatched Liam Livingstone for consecutive sixes in the next over.

Many a batter has struggled with the England international throughout the recent T20 World Cup and at the Abu Dhabi T10, yet Jacks showed what he was all about, first slogging Livingstone over cow-corner and then dancing down the track to loft one back over the bowler’s head.

Jacks ended with a blistering 43 off 17, and accompanied by Hazratullah Zazai with 41 off 20, set up the Tigers, before a late flourish from skipper Faf du Plessis with 22 off eight, enabled them to put up 130 for 5 off their ten overs.
Team Abu Dhabi opened without the in-form Phil Salt who, coming off the back of two player-of-the match performances, injured himself after taking a hit to the knee in the field. And when James Faulkner removed Paul Stirling and Colin Ingram in successive deliveries, the Tigers were well and truly in the driving seat.

Livingstone may have taken a beating with the ball in hand, but he ensured he would have his say with the bat. Luke Wood was smashed for three sixes in a row. The last one the pick of the bunch – majestically lofting a fuller delivery off long-off. Yet, with the following delivery, Wood took a little pace off and deceived the Team Abu Dhabi skipper. Livingstone swung and missed and saw his stumps go flying. Wood, was ecstatic, roaring past Livingstone in a mix of relief and jubilation.

Despite losing regular wickets, the league leaders kept themselves in the chase with lusty blows from Gayle and a fighting Salt, who courageously came in at No. 6. Benny Howell was fantastic, bowling two overs for just 13 and dismissing Chris Benjamin and Salt. The latter bowled after looking to scoop.

With 37 required from two overs and the self-proclaimed “Universe Boss” still at the crease, anything was possible. Mohammad Amir was clubbed for 18 off the penultimate over as Gayle effortlessly used his pace to send the ball to the boundary and the crowd were treated to yet another last-over finish with Team Abu Dhabi.

Crucially, the 42-year-old was not on strike for the beginning of the last over and perhaps the two balls he didn’t get to face off Udana saved the Tigers. Gayle had earlier hit three boundaries in the Sri Lankan’s first over. This time, he could only manage one more maximum, which brought up a quite brilliant half-century in 22 deliveries, but it was ultimately not enough.

For Tigers skipper Du Plessis, it was the first time he had reached double figures in the tournament and crucially, his two sixes in the last over proved to be the difference between winning and losing. “It’s a big step in the right direction for us, especially after losing the toss,” he said.

Eight years ago to the day, he played one of the great match-saving Test knocks with 110* off 466 deliveries against Australia, at a strike rate of under 30. This time, du Plessis ended unbeaten with a strike rate of 275. If the Tigers are going to use this momentum to the Abu Dhabi T10 title, then they will need one of the most versatile multi-format cricketers of this generation to showcase more of his class with the bat.



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Matt Henry to return to Kent for 2022

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New Zealand quick won club’s Bowler of the Year Award in 2018

New Zealand international Matt Henry will return to Kent for the 2022 county season.

Henry, the 29-year-old right-arm seamer, is set to join the club on July 10 and will be available for up to seven Championship games and for the Royal London Cup, subject to regulatory approval.

Having originally played for Kent as an overseas player in 2018, Henry had planned to re-join them during the 2020 season before the Covid-19 pandemic forced both parties agreed on his withdrawal.

He took 75 wickets in 11 matches during the 2018 Championship, finishing the year as Division Two’s highest wicket-taker, with a bowling average of 15.48. During that time, he achieved new first-class best bowling figures twice, firstly with 7 for 45 at Durham before his current best of 7 for 42 against Northamptonshire.

In the 2018 One-Day Cup, Henry was part of the side that reached the final at Lord’s, taking 16 wickets in 11 matches and he won Kent’s Bowler of the Year award at the season’s end.

In 2021, Kent topped Division Three of the Championship and won the Vitality Blast title.

“I have really good memories of playing for Kent in the past,” Henry said. “I’m driven to bring more success to the county in 2022. It was fantastic to see Kent win silverware in 2021, and I know that further trophies are the target for everyone at the county next season – hopefully I can have an impact in making that happen.”

Overall in first-class cricket, Henry has 335 wickets at an average of 24.71, including 15 five-wicket hauls, from 78 career matches. Last June, he finished with six wickets for the match in the second Test against England at Edgbaston – his most recent appearance for New Zealand – and he now has 37 wickets from 14 Tests. In ODIs, he has taken 98 wickets in 55 matches at an average of 25.89 and economy of 5.29.



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IPL 2022 retentions for DC, MI, CSK, KKR, RCB, RR, SRH, PK

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The key questions facing the existing franchises as they look to firm up their retentions

Delhi Capitals are the only IPL team to have finalised their four retentions as the deadline of November 30 is fast approaching. Based on the information gathered, ESPNcricinfo takes a look at the key questions and names each of the other seven existing IPL teams are grappling with before sealing their final list.



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